Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Keep pushing

From 125 to 118.

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

French Laundry

Hi everyone! I have been on a mad crazy hiatus. Sorry!

I seriously came up on the chance of a lifetime: my friend got us a reservation at The French Laundry  If you don't know what that is, it is probably one of the most amazing restaurants there is in Napa Valley. (rated 3 Michelin stars!) It is owned by Chef Thomas Keller. The man is a culinary wizard.

Ever since my first taste of fine dining, I had always dreamed of dining at The French Laundry. I've dined at Bouchon in Las Vegas so French Laundry was the next step! (just kidding) However, I heard that reservations are extremely hard to get and they only let you book 2 months in advance. I was thinking "How hard can it be if you can do this 2 months in advance?" Well, let me explain to you how hard it was!
My friends and I agreed on a Saturday, June 2 reservation 2 months ago. My friend called every week repeatedly trying to get the date and time we wanted. Finally, she was told that they were fully booked and that we could be put on a wait list if we would like. We waitlisted ourselves and carried on with our lives making other plans for June 2 thinking that we wouldn't get in. Boy were we wrong!! On Wednesday, May 30 my friend got a call from The French Laundry saying someone had cancelled on Saturday, June 2, would we like the reservation?


We took it in a heartbeat and I cancelled my Saturday plans. Then came the panic..

What to wear? What to wear?

Well.. Here you go!

The shoes. 

the little black dress

the face. 
Just MUFE duo mat powder, Christian Dior brow pencil in Universal Brown, some Japanese liquid eyeliner (I forget the brand, my coworker bought it for me in Hong Kong) and Shu Uemura lipstick in #270. I always love a good red. I normally go with a matte red but MAC dries my lips out. This Shu Uemura red has a blue undertone but is super moisturizing.

... And now, there will be an onslaught of pictures of food. If you're hungry, do yourself a favor and don't scroll any further! hahahaha

2006 Littorai pinot, Haven Vineyard
we made a couple of stops along the way..
 my first time having a Bouchon macaron!

...and now, let the real food journey begin!

I wonder how many of these old school clothes pins go missing every year..

1st course: 1st course: "sabayon" of pearl tapioca, island creek oysters and white sturgeon caviar
smooth, creamy, briny, mmmmmm. muy fantastico! 

 2nd course: Moulard duck "foie gras parfait" summer yellow peaches, wild ramps, celery branch, Pearson Farm pecans and whipped yogurt.
I have never had a terrine of foie prepared in such a way. It was crazy good. The peaches were so sweet, went excellent with the foie.
Here is a look at the layers:

3rd course: Kona Kanpachi Amandine. Holland white asparagus, cauliflower and "beurre noisette" Best way I have ever had kanpachi! Tender, juicy, great crunch from the almonds. I love a good trout amandine but this kanpachi one definitely takes the cake!

4th course: "Beets and leeks" Maine lobster tail "pochee au beurre doux" , King Richard leeks, "Pommes Maxims" and red beet essence. Basically the lobster is poached in its own shell and bathed in butter. If there's anything the French love, it's butter. Best lobster I have ever had in my whole life. 

 I am more of a cabernet sauvignon person, but this 2006 Littorai pinot was delicious! Paired excellent with our light dishes at French Laundry. Very well balanced and had a sweet finish.

5th course: 49 day dry aged beef tartare. quail egg, spring pole beans, garlic scapes, and dijon mustard.
Each cube of beef was perfectly marbled. So tender.
6th course: Marcho farm nature-fed veal. "Coeur de Veau" English peas, Tokyo turnips, Nantes carrots, Sicilian pistachios and Madras curry jus.
Most tender veal I've ever had. Not gamey at all either. Loved the English peas, they were so sweet!

 7th course: Tomme Dolce. Violet artichoke, Castelvetrano olives, pine nuts, arugula, Meyer lemon condiment.
Cheese isn't really my thing (Hello. I'm Asian. Kinda lactose!) but it was still good.

 8th course: "Buttermilk Glace" cornmeal financier, Delta blueberries, and noble maple syrup.
Never thought I'd enjoy a buttermilk sorbet so much but this delicious. 2 bites and it was a goner

 9th course: Cream cheese "bavarois" acacia honey "granite" French Laundry Garden strawberries, and black pepper "aigre-doux
That granite was something else. Never had a honey granite before but it complimented everything perfectly. Why can't other restaurants do a proper granite!? I've had one at 5a5 in San Francisco and it was disgusting. They can't all be Thomas Keller restaurants.. 

Not a part of the chef's tasting menu but at French restaurants they always give you extra.
Donut holes and cappuccino semifreddo.
Geezus.. Even the donut holes were good, and I don't even like donuts!
Not pictured was the amuse-bouche (It was a gruyere cheese puff ball thing and a crepe like thing with red onion creme fraiche and salmon. I didn't take pictures beacuse it looked like a penis to me. But whatever, was still super amazing delicious), the chocolate hazelnut covered nuts, and some chocolates. I would've been okay with petit fours but they went with chocolates!
This was a crazy expensive meal so don't take this the wrong way. I do not dine like this all the time. I am not a rich person, I don't make six figures. I am wealthy in the sense that I have great foodie friends! However, if you yourself are a foodie, I do recommend you make the decision to dine here at least once in your life. Every single course was amazing.
what a remarkable dinner with Tracy, Cherlynn and myself!

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Oh, hai!

Hey everyone. I'm alive, I swear.